iOS 13.5 released: unlocking with a mask is more convenient


Today, Apple released the quasi-official version of iOS 13.5 GM to developers. If everything goes according to schedule, this version will be equivalent to the official public version. As the coronavirus pandemic continues to force us to use a face mask, there is a need to update some devices, especially those that use Face ID.

iOS and iPadOS 13.5 new updates include a new coronavirus contact tracking technology API. This feature can pave the way for health organizations to begin the development of a new coronavirus tracking app. Furthermore, iOS and iPadOS 13.5 optimizes the Face ID feature. Certainly, users can not unlock the device when wearing a face mask. However, when the iPhone detects that a user is wearing a mask, it will directly pop up the password entry screen. This eliminates the burden of continuous swiping up to activate the password entry screen. Face ID is currently recommended by default for facial unlocking on the iPhone. The PIN code will only activate if multiple attempts fail.

Considering the feedback from users, this new option of unlocking the iPhone seems really convenient.

Here are the full release notes for the iOS 13.5 update:

iOS 13.5 speeds up access to the passcode field on devices with Face ID when you are wearing a face mask and introduces the Exposure Notification API to support COVID-19 contact tracing apps from public health authorities. This update also introduces an option to control automatic prominence of video tiles on Group FaceTime calls and includes bug fixes and other improvements.

Face ID and Passcode

  • Simplified unlock process for devices with Face ID when you are wearing a face mask
  • Passcode field automatically presented after swiping up from the bottom of the Lock screen when you are wearing a face mask
  • Also works when authenticating with the App Store, Apple Books, Apple Pay, iTunes, and other apps that support signing in with Face ID

Exposure Notification

  • Exposure Notification API to support COVID-19 contact tracing apps from public health authorities

FaceTime

  • Option to control automatic prominence on Group FaceTime calls so video tiles do not change size when a participant speaks

Emergency Services

  • Option to automatically share health and other essential information from your Medical ID with emergency services when you place an emergency call (US only)

This update also includes bug fixes and other improvements.

  • Fixes an issue where users may see a black screen when trying to play streaming video from some websites
  • Addresses an issue in the share sheet where suggestions and actions may not load
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